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MSHP Registrar to Present Program on Fort Mackinac’s Role in Civil War

A program highlighting Mackinac Island’s small, but important, role in the Civil War will be presented by Brian Jaeschke, Mackinac State Historic Parks Registrar, as an Essence of Emmet program on Wednesday, April 18 at 6:00 p.m. at the Emmet County Fairgrounds.

The presentation will look at the fort’s history before the war before moving into a discussion about the three political prisoners sent to Fort Mackinac by Tennessee Governor Andrew Johnson and the company of men formed to provide guards. The program will also profile Sergeant William Marshall, Fort Mackinac’s longest serving soldier, and his role as caretaker of the fort during the war, as well as his family’s influence on the Straits of Mackinac.

This program is free, and refreshments will be provided.

The Essence of Emmet group works to promote this region’s rich history. Members of the Essence of Emmet include: the Emmet County Historical Commission, Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association, Harbor Springs Area Historical Society, Headlands International Dark Sky Park, Inland Water Route Historical Society, Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, Little Traverse Historical Society, Mackinac State Historic Parks, Mackinaw Area Historical Society and Pellston Historical Society.

Brian S. Jaeschke was born in Illinois and graduated high school in Wyoming, Michigan. He graduated from Lake Superior State University with a B.S. in Sociology and from East Carolina University with an M.S. in Maritime History and Underwater Archaeology. He worked on Great Lakes

freighters for nine years before accepting the position of Registrar at Mackinac State Historic Parks in 2006. He has had an interest in the Civil War since the 4th grade, has visited several battlefields and related sites, and his great-great-grandfather served in the 169th Ohio Infantry. His latest vignette, titled Where Shall They Be Sent? Confederate Political Prisoners at Fort Mackinac, will be available at all Mackinac State Historic Parks Museum Stores beginning May 2.